LA MESA, Calif. — The La Mesa City Council on Tuesday voted 3-2 to keep the farmers market in the La Mesa Village - its current location.
The La Mesa Farmers Market has been a neighborhood jewel for 26 years. Last year, it moved from the parking lot at city hall to La Mesa Boulevard. Some businesses in the new area say that move made a good thing even better, while others disagree.
“We meet new families every week and they’re pushing strollers, have little kids and with the street being closed, they feel safe to let their kids run around and that’s really important,“ said local business owner Theresa Favro. “It’s a fun atmosphere. They meet with their neighbors and they shop and they bring their out-of-town guests here.“
Grossmont Center had put in a proposal to move the farmer's market to their parking lot a couple miles east of its current location arguing there’s more parking and they’ll donate proceeds to local La Mesa charities.
The proposed change came a year after the market made a move to La Mesa Boulevard from the nearby town hall parking lot.
The Chamber of Commerce also submitted a proposal, but recently withdrew it to support Grossmont Center’s idea. The Chamber said the idea of having money go to charities was a big factor in their decision.
Some business owners in the area said they wanted the market moved because it takes up parking in the area - costing them business. Other businesses support the market staying in the La Mesa Village area because they have had the opposite experience with market attendees also frequenting their businesses.
The La Mesa Village Association said the money they make goes back into promotion and hosting community events. The association further added the event is so popular at its current location there is a waiting list of vendors who want to participate.
“It is been fantastic for us. It gives the ability to reach all of these folks that are coming in that might not have known about us,” said Peter Soutowood, Chair of the La Mesa Village Association.
The La Mesa Farmers Market’s manager Brian Beevers said 70% of area businesses support things staying as they are.
Had the the city council voted to move the market, the last edition on La Mesa Boulevard would have been this Friday, July 26.
La Mesa City Councilmember Colin Parent, who supports keeping the market where it is, set up a web page for those interested to send emails showing their support to the entire council.